Provo, UT

Sign up for startup news at BYU.
Preston Hunter[email protected]
Cory Anderson[email protected]
Michael Mella[email protected]

How to Start a Startup at BYU

Student Groups

Entrepreneurship Club (eClub) - Connecting students interested in entrepreneurship - eClub is the flagship entrepreneurship student organization on campus

Creativity, Innovation, and Design Group - an interdisciplinary collection of faculty and students from BYU, collaborating with industry and leaders to promote the teaching, research, and development of innovation and design at BYU.

BYU Developers Club - Offers events such as Hack Nights and a talent network for those recruiting for SWE roles

BYU Technology Club - Offers opportunities for students of all majors to work for the best tech startups in the country

Graduate Entrepreneur Association - Provides resources and networking opportunities to start, acquire or join a high-growth company

Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) - BYU's branch of ACM, the largest and oldest international scientific and educational computing society.

Accelerators and Incubators

Founders Launchpad - a summer accelerator, participants provided with free office space and mentors. A total of 20 teams are invited to participate by the Rollins Center leadership. Additional invited teams apply directly to the center and are selected based on traction to-date and future potential.

Hackathons and Competitions

Miller Competition Series - Largest single-university student venture competition in the nation

Big Idea Pitch - the first of three competitions in the Miller Competition Series. It is a chance for BYU students to get mentoring and feedback on their big idea and win part of $10,000 in cash prizes to continue their validation needs, such as smoke tests, social ads, prototypes, focus groups, 3D printing, etc. The Big Idea Pitch only requires you to have an idea.

Business Model Competition - phase two in the Miller Competition Series. You have your business idea--now you need to test and validate it, make changes (iterations or pivots) based on evidence found and insights gained, and repeat this process until all the crucial aspects of your business are fully validated.

Miller New Venture (Final Event) - the final phase of the Miller Competition Series. This competition is focused on the traction teams have achieved. At least 10 teams, possibly as many as 15, in the Miller New Venture Challenge will be awarded $15,000 each and admitted to the Founders Launchpad summer accelerator

Inventech Competition - teams of 1-5 students are given the opportunity to analyze a BYU Tech Transfer Office technology and present a business model around it. Up to one team is awarded an $800 cash prize.

Mobile App Competition - Competition to showcase, hone, and develop essential mobile development skills. Runs from November through March and gives out ~15k each year in prizes.

Social Venture Academy - Student entrepreneurs work with mentors to build socially-minded ventures

Student Innovator of the Year - SIOY Competition to enable students to turn creative ideas into reality. Prizes total $50,000.

International Business Model Competition - Co-hosted jointly by BYU, Harvard, and Stanford, is the first international competition of its kind - focuses on testing unexamined market assumptions

University Resources

Entrepreneurship Week (E-Week) - Celebrates the spirit of entrepreneurship and showcases innovation resources across campus

Utah Startup Marketplace - career fair focused on connecting students with local startups.

1 Million Cup - A weekly event for entrepreneurs to meet and network and discuss their startups

Silicon Slopes - Non-profit to empower Utah's startup and tech community. Hosts Silicon Slopes - over 5,000 entrepreneurs, investors, and developers attended the two day event to hear from leading entrepreneurs

Rollins Center - Main hub for entrepreneurship on campus - goal is to mentor students and provide a strong network

Ballard Center - Raises awareness for the world's social problems while helping entrepreneurs launch social ventures

Venture Factory- Provides product development training and project grants - BYU's mentorship program that connects students with successful entrepreneurs who volunteer to serve as mentors

Law and Entrepreneurship Clinic - Student-based program providing BYU's community with legal services

BYU Technology Transfer Office - Office in charge of protecting and commercializing BYU-made technologies

Prototype-a-palooza - a 30-hour rapid prototyping fest to help bring engineers and developers together with big business ideas from the Big Idea Pitch.

Fusion - Fusion is the largest student entrepreneurial networking event in Utah - brings together BYU's talented students and Utah's entrepreneurial community

Notable Courses

Crocker Innovation Fellowship - Interdisciplinary Innovation Class - Year-length innovation experience with $2,000 stipend provided - Fellows will take an interdisciplinary innovation and entrepreneurship course in the winter, participate in a summer internship, and then spend the fall semester on reflection and advanced innovation topics

ENT 381 - Entrepreneurship Lecture Series

ENT 382 - Technology Entrepreneurship Lecture Series

ENT 401 - Entrepreneurial Innovation

ENT 402 - Entrepreneurship Analytics

ENT 411 - Creating New Ventures

ENT 436 - Experiential Entrepreneurship

ENT 421 - Financing New Ventures

ENT 422 - Managing New Ventures and Family Business

ENT 431 - Innovation Practicum

ENT 432 - Commercializing Innovation

ENT 434R - New Venture LaunchPad

ENT 437 - Entrepreneurship Capstone


Contrary - University-focused venture fund investing up to $500K in emerging startups launching from the university scene around the US

Campus Founders Fund - Venture firm investing in student-run startups - managed by students, sponsored by the Kickstart Seed Fund, and issues 10-20k convertible notes

University Growth Fund - Largest education-based private equity fund in the country - provides students with capital as well as the opportunity to work alongside investors

BYU's Cougar Capital - Student-run venture capital and private equity fund run by 2nd-year MBA students at the Marriott School at BYU. The fund has invested in 36 companies, with 15 exits to date.

Building something?

Sign up for startup news at BYU, and be the first to know about new opportunities from Contrary.